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Finding Shakespeare at Stratford-upon-Avon

One of the things that I miss the most when not traveling for a while is long train ride, so when I saw that the weather would be sunny on the weekend, I immediately decided to book train tickets to Stratford-upon-Avon – which is Shakespeare’s birthplace and grave, but apparently also a nice little town that I’d recommend anyone to go visit!

Fun fact: Avon is the river cutting Stratford. Many English towns have ‘upon’ on its name, and the word following it would be the river’s name!

Stratford-upon-Avon is two hours train ride from London, a bit pass Oxford. There are three Shakespeare sites you can go to that are in the town center: Shakespeare’s Birthplace, Nash’s House & New Place, Hall’s Croft – for which you can buy ticket pass for all three.

Shakespeare wall - Startford-upon-Avon

Startford-upon-Avon
Shakespeare’s birthplace behind me
Startford-upon-Avon
English garden at its most glorious state

The Holy Trinity church where Shakespeare’s grave is located is also in the town center, and you can go in with the same ticket pass or by donation.

Holy Trinity Church, Startford-upon-Avon

Shakespeare's grave - Startford-upon-Avon

It is slightly odd to see the real grave of William Shakespeare. Like all legendary figures, their existence feels almost unreal.

Holy Trinity Church - Startford-upon-Avon
Holy Trinity Church (Shakespeare’s Grave) – Startford-upon-Avon

The other two sites are a bit further away: Anne Hathaway’s Cottage and Mary Arden’s Farm (so five Shakespeare sites altogether, plus the church). There’s a cycle trail for them, and you can rent a bike at Stratford Bike Hire. I planned to do the full round initially, but by the time we got to the hire place, it was 4:30pm and they close at 5. We decided to rent the bikes anyway (with reduced price at £5 per bike) and went to Anne Hathaway’s Cottage. I especially wanted to go there because it’s one of the popular ones and the pictures I saw always looked very nice.

Anne Hathaway's Cottage - Statford-upon-Avon
Anne Hathaway’s Cottage – Statford-upon-Avon

I was not disappointed. The cottage was lovely, and the garden was even lovelier.

Anne Hathaway's Cottage - Statford-upon-Avon
Anne Hathaway’s Cottage – Statford-upon-Avon

I saw a bunch of tourists in a van, taking pictures from outside the gate. Maybe because the pass ticket for the five sites cost more than the three sites pass. Though I can’t speak for the last site (Mary Arden’s Farm) because we didn’t go, I think it’s definitely worth going to Anne Hathaway’s cottage if you could make it. I even wish I had spent longer time there, and didn’t have to rush back to return the bikes.

Anne Hathaway's Cottage - Statford-upon-Avon
Lovely spot at Anne Hathaway’s Cottage

We spent the rest of the time just walked around the town, along the river. It was incredibly nice day, a thing you’d appreciate if you live in Britain long enough. We had a marvelous time.

Shakespeare monument - Statford-upon-Avon
Shakespeare monument – Shakespeare in the middle, surrounded by four of his characters (one in each corner)

By mee

Blog about travel, culture, lifestyle and books from London at http://www.wanderingmee.com and http://www.meexia.com/bookie

2 replies on “Finding Shakespeare at Stratford-upon-Avon”

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